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When you’re an entrepreneur, success is never easy and it never happens overnight. If you are in a relationship, it is never a one-person effort. You expect your spouse or significant other to support you and hop on the entrepreneurial roller coaster ride with you. Here are 3 essential issues you need to discuss with your spouse, significant other or family members so that you can come to a meeting of the minds:
1. Time Matters
During launch, your business will be your first priority. This doesn’t mean you love your family and friends any less. It does mean that during this period, your business will need to come first. You need to ask yourself: How much time will you need to put into this new project? Then, discuss with your family members the important time matters involved.
Once you’ve come to terms with the time involved, it is crucial that you put something in place that carves out a regular and consistent time to spend with your loved one(s). The way you spell love in a relationship with an entrepreneur is T-I-M-E. That’s why I make it a point to get childcare every Saturday and carve out time to have lunch together with my wife. I am usually relaxed because I’m out of the office. Things that seemed urgent during the week don’t matter. I get a chance to tell her what’s going on and get her feedback. Having this exchange doesn’t take much time, but you need to do it and do it consistently.
2. Create a Communications Strategy
Keep in mind that some people – possibly you and your spouse, come from traditional families where business stability – nine-to-five jobs and a weekly paycheck, is the rule. For people brought up in such circumstances, the seesaw of launching and entrepreneurship may be hard to handle.
One of the best pieces of advice I can give is to calibrate your communication strategy to suit your life partner. Do you talk about business once a day or once a week? If things are tough, do you come home and share everything before bed or wait until the end of the week to get it all out? Come to an understanding that works for both of you and respect it. How you handle the pressures of your business can either kill or strengthen your relationship.
3. Show Them the Money
How much financial risk are you willing to take? Would you rather take less financial risk and be on the same page as your spouse, or take on more risk and create a problem at home? If you are launching a new business, the odds are you are bootstrapping, that is, using your own money. You and your spouse need to agree upon how much you’re willing to put aside and put at risk in pursuit of your dream. You need to start on the same page.